Should I tell my sister in law her behavior upsets me?

[deleted account] ( 12 moms have responded )

I constantly feel as if my sister in law is in competition with me. It was only weeks after finding out that I was expecting my first that she had announced she was too with her second. Ever since then I have found myself getting annoyed with her very quickly. I feel as if I can't say anything about what my daughter is accomplishing without her mentioning my nephew. Should I tell her this bothers me?

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♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 10/16/2012

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Why are you so super sensitive about what she's doing? Are you afraid that she may "steal your thunder" or draw attention away from your child?



Wow. It was WEEKS after you announced your pregnancy that she announced hers. Well, what was she supposed to do? Wear baggies, hide herself, and never mention anything, just so that you wouldn't feel like she's competing? Babies happen, honey, and you don't have the only uterus in the world. I felt similar with my SIL, but she'd try to one-up me with everything. I shared my first pregnancy, and THE NEXT DAY she said she "thought she might be". her oldest is 4 days younger than my oldest.



You want to be able to brag on your kid, but she shouldn't brag on hers, to save your feelings? How selfish is that?



I'd say that you can act like the primadonna, and tell her that she's bothering you, but you do that at your own risk. To me, it sounds like you're acting like a spoiled baby who wants all of the attention on her, rather than joyfully sharing moments that you BOTH have experienced recently.



Sorry, its harsh, but the world does not revolve solely around you, and to expect others to stop living so that you and your child can be the absolute center of attention is a bit selfish...

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 10/16/2012

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Stefanie, I just respond to the questions as posted, and as I stated, I'm a very blunt person. Been around this block a few times as well, and so I tend to state things in a very straightforward manner.



As I said, my SIL did the same type of things (only she DID get pregnant because I was, and she was a huge one-up type personality)



I recognized that, and just made sure that my kids were always above board on every little thing. I shared milestones, and so did she, but eventually she quit one-upping me, and made it about the shared growth and happy milestones for the entire family.



The thing about it is, you have kids that are close to the same age. This always brings out the comments, whether it's family, or play group, of "Suzy walked for the first time today..."..."Oh, really, well Johnny walked yesterday" People are always going to compare your kids to theirs, and vice versa. It may not be that she's trying to one up you, but to say that she's in the same boat, child raising wise. She also may be striving to let you know that your little one is meeting milestones and benchmarks in much the same way that her kids are, so you have something in common to be happy about.



My point was (while blunt, still stands) that if you tell her "Look, every time I mention my kid, you bring yours up, and its starting to get on my nerves, because I feel that you are trying to be one up on me (or however you wish to state that)" , you stand a very good chance of offending her, alienating her, or making her feel like you are being a spoiled primadonna who can't handle any one else comparing milestones, or taking away your "moment".



Been there, done that. Like I said. People don't even realize that they do it. Its just a natural turn of conversation, when one mom mentions something about her kid, another mom mentions something about hers.



By all means, if you are so put off by her actions, then speak with her. I'm just saying that it may not make the situation better, it may only lead to family discord and strife.

September - posted on 10/16/2012

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I’m sorry your first experience with this site was not what you had hoped it to be. It is however a great site so don’t let one person spoil it for you. There are millions of people with great, supportive advice and opinions.

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Emma - posted on 11/08/2013

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I would speak up, but try it subtly first. I'm the same with my SIL I've just had my first baby now my SIL is pregnant, but she has the worst morning sickness and backache and everything is a million times worse. She also thinks she knows what's best for my son and constantly wants to take him off me. I told her before he was born I didn't want pics straight on facebook and what does she do! Told her to take pics off so she takes some off then puts more on. At my wits end!!

Katrina - posted on 10/16/2012

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Don't worry about it you can get support!



She may not realize she does it goin back to how it was with me she may think you in some way have tried to make it into a competition.

Go to her kindly and loving and tell her if you have came across in anyway like that you are sorry and you don't want it to be like that. Then exain to her that sometimes it feels like she is trying to one up you when comes to the kids but make sure she know you love hearing about them and how they are doing.



Maybe it's a big misunderstanding and just needs loving talking out you know.?

Or you can choose to not say anything and try not to get upset.

[deleted account]

She is just the one upper type. I love my niece and nephew. All of their accomplishments are wonderful. I enjoy getting to hear about how they are learning and all the new cool things they say and do. It's the "well my child does this" attitude that is getting to me. I am not in competition with her in any way. This was my first post and apparently it didn't come across the correct way. I came to look for support and some people are making me second guess my decision to join this site. I hope you all have a great day.

Dove - posted on 10/16/2012

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I am guessing you have more issues than what you have detailed as well, but if you aren't going to share them... there's not much I have to offer.



My first thought was that maybe she has social issues and is just trying to converse with you, but then again... 'I' have social issues, so I project to see them everywhere. ;)

September - posted on 10/16/2012

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I'm guessing the pregnancy thing isn't the only issue you're having with your SIL. Or at least that's how your post comes across to me.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 10/16/2012

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Well, then what is it, Stefanie. Because it sure sounds like, to me, that you'd rather not have your sil comment on anything related to your child, nor do you want her bringing her child's accomplishments up in front of you.



So what is it? Parents compare their kids. It just happens. Yes, it's your first, which makes things all wonderful and exciting for you, and you think that everyone needs to pay attention to that, but the fact is, your child is going to be compared to all the other children around, in each setting, whether it's parents doing it, or daycare givers, etc.



So, if you don't think that I got the point, explain! Considering that this ain't my first rodeo, I tend to be blunt.

[deleted account]

I guess I probably should have worded it differently. It's not a stealing of the thunder issue. Thank you Katrina for your comment.

Katrina - posted on 10/16/2012

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One of my best is going through this same things

And I did too with an old high school friend.



The way I handled mine bc she thought I was trying to make my son better than her so she would jump in and say something about her son when I wasn't trying to compete with her, finally I told her if I have done something to make you think or feel that I'm competing with you I'm sorry. Each child is different and I'm just proud of my son and how much he is growing, and I living hearing about your son but I don't like feeling as though its a contest between our kids. Lucky for me it went over well and it stopped.



Now my best friend and her sister in law is different. She chooses to keep it to herself but she does get every up set I believ they have talked about it before but the sister in law hasn't ever changed but they both have girls that are year apart I think so it's silly to do it but some people feel like they have to. That's why my friend just try's to be supportive of her niece and try's to blow it off for the most part but when she has a hard time letting it she comes to me or someone else that can just listen to her.



Since you have a girl and she has a boy it maybe you say something and it makes her think of something as well and it's not anything to worry about , if you need to I say be supportive but you might be the "bigger" person and do kinda like I did with my old high school friend.



Good luck and remember every child is different and they will learn thing differently too.

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